County Cup Final
Venue: Waterhall, Brighton RFC
Worthing College 45-19 BHASVIC
The men’s rugby travelled the short distance to Brighton rugby club for the county cup final against a strong BHASVIC side. Worthing started the game playing into the wind, and knew they had a tough battle for the first half. The game started with both teams sparring in the middle of the field, with no one able to make a break through. This all stopped when Worthing attacked from a scrum on the half-way line and Marcus Law beat 4 defenders to score the first try under the posts. Converted by Will Sanderson (7-0).
From the restart Worthing applied pressure again and a break from Sean Hulley moved Worthing into the BHASVIC half, this combined with a series of strong drives from Freddie Mouland, Ollie Rowley and Alex Ward put BHASVIC under pressure. This led to good snipe around the breakdown from Aaron Linfield who offloaded to Max Ravaudet who was brought down 1m out from the line, great support from Freddie Holmes allowed him to pick up and dive over for the second try. Again converted by Will Sanderson (14-0).
Worthing once again produce a very exit from the kick-off. Which forced BHASVIC back into their own half. BHASVIC were now getting some phases together and putting Worthing under some pressure. Both teams exchanged possession several times with Worthing conceding penalties at the breakdown and turning the ball over. Worthing got hold of the ball and produced some good carries through Ollie Fielder, Carl Moffat and Callum Erskine. This led to a good Johnny Owen break who drew the full-back and fed Ollie Fielder to score right of the posts. Conversion missed by Will Sanderson (19-0)
Worthing were now very confident and from the kick-off they attempted to attack. A mistake and players going off-script led to BHASVIC gaining possession. A series of strong drives from BHASVIC took them up to the Worthing line. Where some ferocious contact exchanges resulted in a penalty. The quick tap was taken and the ball was moved well to the left-hand side, where only a brilliant last-ditch tackle by Will Beer stopped a try 1 meter out. Worthing were now stretched and BHASVIC picked up and dived over to score their first points of the game with a successful conversion. (19-7).
Worthing started the second-half well, with a well executed exit from the kick-off put BHASVIC back into their own half. Worthing then won a penalty and kicked into the corner. An excellently executed lineout and subsequent maul drove BHASVIC back and over their own try-line, with the try being scored by Max Ravaudet. An excellent combined effort from all the forwards. Conversion missed (24-7).
BHASVIC gained possession from the kick-off and began to work through the phases, Worthing defence was holding strong, with some very intelligent work from Conor Wheat. A brilliant chip and chase from inside their own half, was recollected by BHASVIC who rounded Will Beer to score. (24-12)
Worthing collected the ball from the kick-off and attempted an exit, but kicked the ball out on the full. BHASVIC now had a lineout on Worthing’s 22m line. Some brilliant work at the lineout by Ollie Rowley meant that Worthing stole the ball back. It was moved well by Johnny Owen, Ollie Fielder and received by Marcus Law, who once again made a very good break and beat two more defenders to score another very good individual effort. Converted by Will Sanderson (31-12).
By this stage the game was not over as a contest and the long season was taking its toll on the Worthing side. Many of the leaders were fatiguing after a tough schedule in recent weeks, therefore accuracy was vital to success. From a scrum on the edge of the Worthing 22m Owen sent the ball 50m than Sanderson was first to the bouncing ball, he hacked on and won the foot race to the ball. He added the extras to make it 38-12 Blues.
BHASVIC started to gain some territory and were knocking on the Blues 22 when a knock on advantage was given and Worthing started moving the ball to left wing. As soon as advantage was called over the BHASVIC wing gambled (successfully) on the interception and trotted over for the five pointer with the extras added it was 31-19 Blues.
Good pressure from the Blues deep in the opponents half created another turn over opportunity and the ball move successfully to Mouland and the second row showed some wheels and ball skills to barge over from twenty meters. With Sanderson adding the extras Worthing looked imperious at 45-19, but in reality this was far from the case. BHASVIC toiled until the very end and but for some good clean up work during the first twenty minutes the complexion of the contest could have been incredibly different.
Speaking after the match Coach Coulson said about the team “they did not do everything that was asked of them, but they did enough on the day. Every player should be incredibly proud of their achievements in defending the county cup.”
When asked about next season Coach Hewick said “We have three very big and challenging league games to go, we win those we are League and Cup winners. That would be great, but for now we are focusing on the match against Newman next week.”
Tries: Law 2, Sanderson, Holmes, Fielder, Ravaudet, Mouland
Cons: Sanderson 5